Do you want to know a secret? The reason successful businesses become successful is they pay attention to small details and improve everything they do. It is those same small details that make major differences to customer loyalty and the bottom-line.
The secret to success for the Ritz-Carlton hotels and other excellent companies is they have made process improvement and defect removal a science. The techniques and steps the Ritz-Carlton hotels use can be applied to any business or industry no matter what the size. The process Ritz-Carlton hotels use to remove defects improves everything they do and saves them millions of dollars each year. In 1994, they increased sales by $75 million using 500,000 less man-hours. They did it by eliminating defects, rework and time-consuming steps in their key processes impacting customer service.
Fixing problems and improving service doesn't happen by accident. They have created a non-stop problem identification and solution process. The process begins at a comprehensive employee orientation program. All employees receive training and must pass an orientation exam with 100% accuracy or take the course over again.
One important factor they learn about is the Internal Defect Form (IDF). Any employee noticing a deficiency or defect during the workday writes up an IDF. All forms are forwarded to the hotel Quality Office for consolidation. The Quality Office tracks them and sends them to the appropriate department for action. Department managers and Quality Coaches take action to improve, repair or replace the defect. The important thing to remember is that it is the small, seemingly insignificant defects that have a major impact on good service. Average organizations will ignore or overlook minor customer inconveniences. Excellent organizations focus on the details. Here are seven suggestions to consider when initiating a process improvement strategy for your business.
Smith shows businesses how to build productive and profitable work environments that attract, keep and motivate their workforce. He speaks at conferences and is the president of a management consulting firm called Chart Your Course International located in Conyers, Georgia. Phone him at (770)860-9464 or send an email at . More information and articles are available at >www.ChartCourse.com [http://www.ChartCourse.com.].
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Article Submitted On: January 31, 2000
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